Swanee

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About Swanee

"Swanee" is an American popular song written in 1919 by George Gershwin, with lyrics by Irving Caesar. It is most often associated with singer Al Jolson. The song was written for a New York City revue called Demi-Tasse, which opened in October 1919 in the Capitol Theater. Caesar and Gershwin, who was then aged 20, claimed to have written the song in about ten minutes riding on a bus in Manhattan, finishing it at Gershwin's apartment. It was written partly as a parody of Stephen Foster's "Old Folks at Home", even filching the title for the Swanee lyrics. It was originally used as a big production number, with 60 chorus girls dancing with electric lights in their slippers on an otherwise darkened stage. The song had little impact in its first show, but not long afterwards Gershwin played it at a party where Al Jolson heard it. Jolson then put it into his show Sinbad, already a success at the Winter Garden Theatre, and recorded it for Columbia Records in January 1920. "After that", said Gershwin, "Swanee penetrated the four corners of the earth." The song was charted in 1920 for 18 weeks holding the No. 1 position for nine. It sold a million sheet music copies, and an estimated two million records. It became Gershwin's first hit and the biggest-selling song of his career; the money he earned from it allowed him to concentrate on theatre work and films rather than writing further single pop hits. Arthur Schwartz said: "It's ironic that he never again wrote a number equaling the sales of Swanee, which for all its infectiousness, doesn't match the individuality and subtlety of his later works."Jolson recorded the song several times in his career and performed it in the movies The Jolson Story (1946), Rhapsody in Blue (1946), and Jolson Sings Again (1949). For the song's performance in The Jolson Story, Jolson, rather than actor Larry Parks, appeared as himself, filmed in long shot. Although usually associated with Jolson, "Swanee" has been recorded by many other singers, most notably Judy Garland in A Star Is Born. The song was also used by the Sydney Swans Australian Rules Football Club for its marketing promotions in the late 1990s. 


Year:
1961
7:31
39 Views

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I've been away from you a long time 
I never thought I'd miss you so 
Somehow I feel your love is real
Near you I long to be

The birds are singing, it is song time 
The banjos strummin' soft and low 
I know that you 
Yearn for me too
Swanee, you're calling me

Swanee
How I love you, how I love you 
My dear old Swanee! 
I'd give the world to be among the folks in 
D-I-X-I
Even now my mammy's waiting for me 
Praying for me, down by the Swanee

The folks up north will see me no more 
When I go to the Swanee shore! 

Swanee! Swanee!
I'm coming back to Swanee 
Mammy, mammy
I love the old folks at home!

Swanee!
How I love you, how I love you 
My dear old Swanee! 
I'd give the world to be among the folks in 
D-I-X-I
Even now my mammy's waiting for me
Praying for me, down by the Swanee

The folks up north will see me no more 
When I go to the Swanee shore!

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Judy Garland

Judy Garland (born Frances Ethel Gumm; June 10, 1922 – June 22, 1969) was an American actress, singer and vaudevillian. Described by Fred Astaire as "the greatest entertainer who ever lived" and renowned for her contralto voice, she attained international stardom throughout a career that spanned more than 40 years as an actress in musical and dramatic roles, as a recording artist and on the concert stage. Respected for her versatility, she received a Juvenile Academy Award and won a Golden Globe Award as well as Grammy Awards and a Special Tony Award. She was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in the remake of A Star is Born and for the Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the 1961 film Judgment at Nuremberg. She remains t… more »

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Written by: GEORGE GERSHWIN, IRVING CAESAR

Lyrics © Peermusic Publishing, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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"Swanee Lyrics." Lyrics.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 17 Jan. 2020. <https://www.lyrics.com/lyric/3430116/Judy+Garland>.

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